Joan Mills


See Mother. Mother is sleeping. "Jump up, Mother," says Father. "Jump up! Today is the first day of term."

Oh, see Mother get out of bed! Her eyes are not open. Her slippers are on the wrong feet. She cannot find the bedroom door. Funny Mother!

"Hurry, children," says Mother. "Today is the first day of term!"

See the children go down to the kitchen. They hurry slowly on the first day of term, don't they? Mother hurries to the kitchen, too. Mother has one eye open now.

"I will give you a good breakfast," says Mother. "I will give you fruit juice, porridge, toast, bacon, eggs, and milk from the friendly cow."

"Ugh!" says Laura.

"Ugh!" says Bobby.

"Ugh!" says Chris.

Laura wants cottage cheese and tea. Bobby wants cornflakes and cocoa. Chris wants three bananas.


"Ugh!" says Mother.                         

Here comes Father. He is wearing his clean white shirt and good brown suit. Father is a business executive. "I am going to work, Mother," says Father. "Good-bye!"

"Good-bye, Father!" call Laura, Bobby, Chris and Mother. Father waves good-bye. Father is glad he is a businessman and not a mother.


"Children, children!" says Mother. "Hurry up and put on your clothes. Soon the school bus will arrive!"

See Laura. Laura is combing her hair. See Bobby. Bobby is reading. See Chris. Chris is tattooing his stomach with a ballpoint pen.

See Mother's hair stand up! What is Mother saying? Those words are not in our book, are they? Run, children, run!

"Mother, Mother!" says Laura. "I have lost a shoe!"

"Mother, Mother!", says Chris. "My zip is stuck, and I have a jelly baby in my ear!"

"Mother, Mother!", says Bobby. "I think I am ill. I think I may be sick on the yellow school bus!"

Oh, see Mother run!

"I am going mad," says Mother. "Here is Laura's shoe on the stove. Here is another pair of trousers for Chris. Here is a thermometer for Bobby, who does not look ill to me."

Now what are the children doing? Laura is combing her hair. Bobby is playing the banjo. Chris is under the bed feeding jelly babies to the cat.

"Oh!" says Mother. "Hurry, hurry! It is time for the yellow school bus!"

Mother is right. (Mother is always right.) Here comes the yellow school bus.

See all the children on the bus jump up and down. Jump! Jump! Jump! See the pencil cases fly out of the windows! Listen to the driver of the yellow school bus. He cannot shout as loud as the children, can he? Run, Laura! Run, Bobby! Run, Chris!

See Mother throw kisses. Why do Laura, Bobby and Chris pretend they do not know Mother?

"Good-bye! Good-bye!" calls Mother. "Barroom!" goes the yellow bus.


How quiet it is.

Here is Chris's sweater in the shoe cupboard.

Here are Bobby's glasses under the cat.

Here is Laura's comb in the fruit bowl.

Here are cornflakes all over the kitchen floor.

Here is Mother. Crunch, crunch, crunch.

Mother is making a big cup of coffee. Mother is sitting down. Mother does not say anything. Mother does not do anything. Mother just sits and smiles.

Why is Mother smiling?

(Source unknown)



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